As the nation hotly debates whether or not the NSA has the right to monitor US citizens’ phone calls and Internet browsing, US employees seem unconcerned by the notion that corporations are playing "Big Brother" in the workplace.
According to the seventh annual "[email protected]
" study from Websense, conducted by Harris Interactive, an astonishing 92% of US employees agree that their companies have the right to install web-filtering technology to manage which types of websites they visit on the job.
A look at the reasons shows it is little wonder that employees feel that way. The survey reveals that almost half of employees believe they are at risk of losing their jobs if they visit adult content sites using their Internet connections at work, and nearly a third believe they will be fired if they infect the company systems with malicious spyware or a virus.
In stark contrast, only 11% believed they would lose their jobs if they fell asleep at their desks.
"Protecting employees from hostile work environments that can result from the availability of x-rated content in the workplace will always be an important concern for organizations who seek to limit their potential legal liability for sexual harassment," said Michael Newman of Websense. "However, web-based security threats such as malicious spyware and viruses are much more difficult for both employees and companies to detect, and the potential for damage can be disastrous – one accidental click of the mouse can take an entire network down for days at a time."
Employees perceive the threats as real; 12% said a co-worker, friend, or acquaintance had e-mailed them links to sites they considered offensive. Similarly, 11% said they had received links they thought might contain spyware or some sort of security risk.